278New Vintage Computer Forum and a question
- May 5 8:38 PMHello all,
I just found this group while poking away at the net. I'm glad
there's a community of Altair users/collectors. . .
First off, I have a Vintage Computer Collecting forum that I started
as an extension of my website at www.vintage-computer.com/vcforum.
It has been accessible for about a week now and we've already got
over 120 posts. I'm hoping that by getting the word out we can
create a dynamic community.
I encourage you to head over and take a look.
Now, my question:
As part of my collection I have an Altair 8800 (actually 2, but one
is being rebuilt) and an Altair 8800BT.
The 8800BT came with a pair of MITS 8" drives (Pertec drive, MITS
controller in the drives and machine) and it works perfectly. Turn
the key and the machine boots to a prompt.
The 8800 came with the same setup but never booted. I recently tried
a few things to figure out where the problem was.
First of all, I tested the 8800 set of disk controller boards in the
working 8800bt system and I have and determined that the cards are
not the problem. (The drives that came with the 8800 aren't quite
functional, but they are close)
I then returned my attention to the original 8800 with its
controller cards hooked up to the pair of known-good drives. For the
life of me I can't get this machine to function properly. I have no
idea why it won't boot, but it won't. It goes through the motions;
it enables the boot drive and loads the heads but it won't output
anything to the terminal.
I suspected the serial card until I ran a test on that and was able
to get it to spit data out from the proper output port. I've tested
every other aspect of the system, within reason, and the machine
appears to be fine. It just won't cooperate with me about booting.
I'm at my wits end trying to boot this machine.
Does anyone have any suggestions about what I can try next? I'd
really like to have the 8800 boot from the drives someday. . .
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